Saturday, November 15, 2008

Can't believe it's the middle of November already!

Let's see.........Where to start?

It's the 15th of November and life is good with the Palmer's.  With the exception of Alexa having a killer cold and Brent taking a header off a 6 foot platform at work and having 9 stitches in his lip, things are great.  Hmmm, I seem to have escaped any ailments this time around - so good for me. I'm sure I just threw the challenge out there and now I'm next on the list!

Alexa is doing fabulous here.  She got her 1st report card and I'm happy to announce that she is having a much better year than last year.  Still room for improvement but I am thrilled with her progress.  She has met some amazing friends and is loving life.  There are two in particular (Daci and Kyle - no special order, just alphabetic) that have been hanging around a lot, and short of doing their laundry and checking their homework, I'm starting to feel like they are part of the family.  They must feel at home here because they now yell for me when they are at the other end of the house just like Alexa does.  Now when I hear MOM being yelled, I'm not quite sure who it is, with the exception of Kyle.......his voice is deeper than the girls.  They are always wanting me to put them in order of who is my favorite and I keep telling them they are all my favorite (but you know who you are!)lol

Alexa took a surfing lesson last weekend and loved it.  She was very sore the next day and had bruises on her hips from the board but I think it is something that she is definitely going to want to do next spring.  We will post pics soon.   

All of us went home for the East/West game a few weeks ago and had a great time.   It was so nice to see everyone again and Alexa had a blast hanging out with all her West High buddies at the game.  She was glad to be able to go home and see everyone, but was ready to come back here too.  She has totally made the transition.  As you know, as a mom, I couldn't ask for more. She's happy, so now I can continue on with my journey of trying to figure out my place with this whole move.  

Things are progressing with Crosswinds and I have become much more organized with my financial responsibilities.  Don't worry, your donations have always been safe, but now I can honestly say I don't feel buried with all the logistics/paperwork that I kept putting off.  I feel very comfortable with two of the three programs that I am using and am now ready to tackle Quick Books - ugh! 

I guess that's all for now.  I have to get Alexa moving.  She has guard practice this morning from 10-2 and is not too thrilled to have to get out of bed.  

Stay tuned for future and more frequent posts!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Great Weekend

I'm back from my trip home to Corning - it was great! I really enjoyed my time with my parents and seeing all my friends from work. Brent and Alexa had a good weekend just hanging out by themselves. Her and I get to do that all the time but it isn't very often that I am gone and they get to hang. They just hung around the house on Friday and then joined the group on Saturday afternoon for the Amazing Race. I hear it was loads of fun for all. The word from Brent is that the highlight of his night was watching Ashley run. For some strange reason he doesn't ever remember seeing her run. Although it rained and he wasn't too hip on playing in the rain at first, he says that he doesn't think it would have been nearly as fun if it was dry. He did want me to report on a few highlights..........he said that David's team cheats, Chris Vernon is way too competitive (it's been three days and he is still saying that his team won) and he gives a big shout out to whoever made the chocolate peanut butter brownies. You know Brent, it's all about the goodies!

I was worried that I might get back home and have a hard time coming back, but it was fine. You know, as usual, God came through in a very loud and clear way just before I left for Corning. I guess He just can't be subtle with me. I'm sure He gives me all sorts of chances, but when I don't respond, then He pulls the big guns out. I've really been struggling with getting out of this rut I've been in for the past several weeks. Alexa has been doing amazing and I think once she found her place here and I didn't have to pour all my energy into making sure she was settled, I then realized that I wasn't as stable as I thought I was.

I've never hated it here, but I am struggling with not knowing anyone when I go to the grocery store or not knowing my way around. We are such social creatures and it's been hard not knowing all our neighbors and having to drive to get anywhere we want to go. So, I knew that when I got back to Corning there would be a rush of "Phew - finally back to knowing my way around." I pulled into town and saw my old neighbor driving down the street and as I was in the parking lot of Wegman's I ran into someone I knew. So, where's this going you ask - stick with me. It will being to make sense soon. I do have a very bad habit of skipping around and only expressing half my thoughts so those of you who have any amount of sanity may have difficulty following me.

Part 2 - This entry was started 10/14....... It's now 11/15!  This is what you are in for if you are trying to keep up with us.

I was going to just trash this and start a new entry but I do want to finish my thought before I start a new entry.  It isn't going to be nearly as profound or organized but I do want everyone to see how God stepped in at the perfect time (as usual) and moved me to the next level.

About a week before I left for my trip I was driving to work and heard the new Sanctus Real song "Whatever You're Doing".  Needed to hear those lyrics.  Ever feel like something is directed at you and only you?  Well, this song must have been written specifically for me.  Every word rings true for me.  I won't bore you with the entire lyrics, but do want to list a few that are most meaningful to me.  "It's time for healing, time to move on, It's time to fix what's been broken too long"  "Time for a milestone, time to begin again, revaluate who I really am...Am I doing everything to follow your will or just climbing aimlessly over these hills"  and of course the chorus - "Whatever you're doing inside of me, it feels like chaos somehow there's peace.  It's hard to surrender to what I can't see but I'm giving into something heavenly".

At the point that I heard that song, I realized I was still fighting God for control.   I knew so strongly that we belong down here but still was just floundering in how to let go and let God just do His thing.   I have to trust Him with everything and that's so hard to do.  I am real good at giving it up and then just as good and grabbing that rope and holding on as tight as I can to pull it back in again.  

So, like I said, not as profound as if I would have finished my thought when I was living it a month ago, but it still is a great reminder to me to trust God with our lives and He will do the rest.  It still isn't smooth sailing yet (never will be) but it's much better than it was a few months ago.  I will post now so this isn't another killer entry and begin a new one getting up to date on the last few weeks. 

Monday, September 29, 2008

Here we are - Finally!

For those of you who know us, it will come as no surprise that we win the prize for "Most Pitiful Bloggers". And for those who do not yet know us, I apologize now for the lack of information you are going to get from our blog. We are the ones who will pick up the phone or just stop by to catch up.

I know that I will never begin to do our story justice since it has been going on since last fall. It's hard to believe that it was a year ago that we began this journey, and yes Ashley, I should have been journaling  this all along, but haven't.  So, you are going to get the Reader's Digest version of "The Palmer's take Wilmington".

Actually my personal journey stated back in July 2008.  I don't want you to get the impression that Brent and Alexa played a minor roll in this decision because they didn't, but the tough sell in this was me so I am going at this from my point of view.  Alexa has started her own blog so you can hear her story at  She takes after her mother when it comes to writing thins down so don't expect frequent updates!

Denis Ingalls works with me at the credit union and was asked to relocate to our Wilmington branch to start up a Financial Services department.  The credit union provided those services to members from the main office in Corning, but wanted to extend the department to Wilmington. At the time Denis told me they may be moving, I began to think that would be a great place to live.   I had never been to Wilmington, but had been to Myrtle Beach and loved the area and knew it wasn't that far from there.  Brent had been asked on several occasions to relocate for work but it was never an option for me.  I wouldn't even entertain the idea of moving away from the town I grew up in and wouldn't dream of uprooting Alexa from the only home she ever knew.  

To back up just a bit, I grew up with Denis (lived right down the street as kids), then as adults he and Kristy became one of our best friends and their son Ethan and Alexa were born 4 hours apart (Ethan is quick to let everyone know that he is older).  They have been in school together since kindergarten.  So, this is the point where I believe that God planted the seed. 

When Chris and Ashley came to us last Septembery and told us that God had called them to plant a church in Wilmington, NC (same place that Denis and Kristy were going) I would have thought that I would have kicked into panic mode.  You see, Ashley had become another one of my closest friends in last couple of years.  Lisa Mizzoni had been my BFF for ever, but Kristy and Ashley were my super bestest friends too!  So, at that point two of my closest Peeps were moving south and I wasn't all that broken up about it.  Obviously it was because I was going to be going myself but didn't realize it at the time.  

There were many sleepless nights from that point on and there are still more to come I'm sure, (God does His best work on me in the wee hours of the morning). So for about a month, I was never woken up by the alarm because I was usually awake around 4:30am.   I was really struggling because I was afraid I was trying to make a decision (a life changing decision for many involved) based on my emotions.  I was thinking of moving 600 miles away from my parents, my best friend, my job and everything that was safe and familiar to me and my family and I had to be sure that it was something that God had really called us to do and not because my other two buds were headed to Wilmington.

This is where I could go on for pages and pages, but to spare you all I am going to jump to two big "Ah Ha" moments that sealed the deal for me.  When the Ingalls finally announced to everyone that they were moving, Kristy came to our house one Saturday night and sat down with Alexa to tell her the news.  Poor Alexa took the news so hard.  This was the 1st time that anyone close to her was going to move away.  Kristy was like a 2nd mom to Alexa - she babysat her when she was younger and has just been a big part of her life as long as she has remembered.  She cried herself into exhaustion that night so Sunday morning I let her sleep and her and Brent met me up at church around 11am.  We went into the service and sat right next to who......the Ingalls.  As soon as Alexa saw Kristy she went into melt down mode.  So I took her into the bathroom to calm her down.  Hang on, the "Ah Ha" moment is almost here.  Alexa just couldn't understand why they had to move and I explained that the credit union asked Denis to relocate there to fill a business need.  She then asked me if I could move down there and work for the credit union.  I said maybe and she asked me to go into work the next day and see if I could move too.  I said ok and she immediately stopped crying and said, "Mom, this is going to sound really weird but I feel like we are supposed to be moving down there too."  I told her that it didn't sound weird because I felt that we were being called to be down there too.  A calm came over her like I have never seen before, and at that moment I knew that God was working in my 14 year old daugher too.  Brent and I had already felt that we were supposed to help with this church plant, but Alexa confirmed at that point that we were being called to go down there.

You may want to take a little break because there's lots more to go.  It may take me a year to get started, but once I get going I tend to ramble on forever.  I don't want to give anyone the impression that the decision was made and we never looked back because there were lots of tears and prayers for months to come before we ever told anyone of our decision to move.  Of course the hardest ones were my parents.  I still remember the look in their faces when I sprung that one on them 3 days before Christmas.  I know I broke their hearts (more because of Alexa than me - I think) and for the next few days I think I went through the hardest time in my life.  

This is leading up to the other big "Ah Ha" moment.  I basically cried my way through the next two days and then God spoke to me in a way that He never has before.  I was on my way to a total meltdown - and a passage of scripture came screaming at me that began to make things abundantly clear - Mark, chapter 10.  The rich young man asks Jesus how to inherit eternal life. Jesus tells him to sell everything and follow him.  The young man turns away and leaves because he is so wealthy and can not bear to give it all away.  Jesus then turns to His disciples and says how hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God.  It was at that point that I realized that God was not asking me to give Him my money, but He was asking me to give Him myself.  I have never had a hard time sharing my money with those who need it.  My riches were my family and all that was safe and comfortable to me in Corning.  I have never been ashamed of my faith, but have never been one to stand up on a table and shout out loud that I was a believer.  I am more of a fly under the radar person than a risk taker.  But that night I believe that my Heavenly Father was asking me to put Him before my earthly father.  He was asking me to shout out to the world that I was a follower of Jesus and that I felt so strongly about my faith that I was willing to give up everything (especially my geographic location close to my mom and dad) and follow Him wherever He asked me to go.  It was the hardest thing I have ever done to date because every little girl wants her daddy to support her in everything she does.  I'm not saying my dad doesn't support me, but it is so hard for him to understand why I needed to move from home and take his grand daughter away from him for the last three years of her high school career.  I'm sure most parents / grandparents hope that their kids stay somewhat close to them as they grow old and in one quick instance I tore those hopes away from him.

OK, to spare all of you major eye strain and me from carpal tunnel, I am going to jump to the major blessings that we received to move down here.  Brent and I were both able to keep our jobs, his company was very generous in relocating him since they do not have a facility in this area.  He now works from home and has an office at the house.  We sold our home in about a month from the time it went on the market and purchased a beautiful home in Hampstead in the same week that we accepted the offer on ours in Corning.  Alexa, although she had a rough start, loves school and is in the color guard in the band and loves that as well.  She has made some great friends and is attending youth group events with the Ingalls at their church.  

We have our good days and our bad days but I still believe in my heart that God called us here to do great things and believe we made the right decision to follow Him.  I miss my mom and dad terribly but am looking forward to seeing them this weekend.  I have to go up to Corning for work and Brent and Alexa are staying behind because she has a band competition.  So, please pray for my safety while traveling and for Brent and Alexa while I am gone.  

I think that is all I have in me for now.  I can't promise but will try to be better at communicating news as it happens going forward.  I hope to get a few new pics on here of the family and the house soon.   

Thursday, September 25, 2008


We finally have a Blog site. Just not too much to say. Check back often.